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Nov 4, 2022
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Whose Crimea? And whose Donbass?

In the photo: everyday life in Donetsk

In the photo: everyday life in Donetsk (Photo: Valery Sharifulin/TASS)

It is too early for the largest retailers to enter new regions of Russia, the Deputy Prime Minister and the head of the Ministry of Industry and Trade believes Denis Manturov. According to him, local trade copes with provision in the regions.

“It is too early to talk about attracting federal retailers to the territory. And in general, these regions already have their own networks and non-network trade. There are no federal networks, but there are local ones – and they provide the population with everything they need, ”he said.

In his opinion, it is necessary to develop wholesale markets and fairs in these territories. The Ministry of Industry and Trade interacts with representatives of the authorities responsible for trade in these territories and recommends the development of multi-format trade in the new Russian territories.

“We guided our colleagues on our draft trade development strategy, which sets out our vision for the development of the industry, as well as the concept for the development of wholesale food markets, guidelines for organizing fairs, street trade,” he explained, adding that in the strategy valid until 2025 year, emphasis was placed on the development of both retail chains and fairs and markets.
Is it correct? Moreover, all these networks, mobile operators, banks etc. they haven’t even really entered the Crimea yet, so the development of Tavria and Donbass can drag on for decades…

“This is a problem from which the residents of the DPR and LPR are neither cold nor hot,” he said. historian, publicist, permanent expert of the Izborsk club Alexander Dmitrievsky:

– The question is not when the federal retail chains will come to the republics of Donbass, but that we have managed without them all these eight years. During this time, we have formed our own trading enterprises, which own many stores, in which the assortment and prices are not much different from similar Russian supermarkets. Buying essential goods in Donetsk is not a problem, and we no longer need to go to Taganrog or Rostov for them, as it was at the beginning of 2015. The only thing that we still have in short supply is all kinds of luxury items that we can easily order in Russia with a request to bring those who go there, or, in extreme cases, to drive there ourselves.
“I think Denis Manturov is justifying chain supermarkets in advance with his interview, which are not going to enter new Russian territories anyway,” says journalist, secretary of the committee of the Crimean regional branch of the OKP Sergey Kulik.

— Money loves silence. And how can you build a business in unstable regions where active hostilities are still ongoing? Build a supermarket, and HIMARS will fly into it. Nobody is going to take risks.

“SP”: – Which of the retailers, in your opinion, have something to fear?

– Virtually everyone. Some are wary of possible financial losses during hostilities, while others are wary of possible sanctions. It’s no secret that many large Russian network retailers have a large amount of foreign capital in their assets, and some are even managed from abroad.

“SP”: – They also did not go to the Crimea for a long time. And now Russian Railways is going to officially launch trains. To what extent, in your opinion, is the situation comparable to the Crimean one?

– Indeed, even in the calm Crimea, large Russian business was in no hurry to enter. Yes, and now especially not in a hurry. By 2019, that is, five years after the Crimean Spring, there were only two network retailers with a mainland residence permit on the peninsula. Now, of course, their list has expanded – PUD, Dobrotsen, Yabloko, a number of other hypermarkets, some of which are Crimean “natives”, operate in Crimea. But “Magnit” and “Pyaterochka” did not dare to step over the Kerch Strait. What can we say about retailers, when the peninsula stubbornly ignores even Sberbank! Although back in April, the Permanent Representative of Crimea to the President of Russia Georgy Muradov urged large Russian banks to open their offices here. If they are even afraid of the Crimea as hell, then there is no need to even talk about Taurida, the Sea of ​​\u200b\u200bAzov and the Donbass.

“SP”: – How generally is it legal that federal retailers no longer work not even in one, but in five regions of the Russian Federation? And how does it look from the point of view of the unity of the country? What will people generally say?

– What will people say? We lived without “fives” before, we will live further. We somehow don’t care. But law enforcement agencies, I believe, should ask themselves the question: how loyal are the management of these Russian companies to the Constitution of the country, according to which “the sovereignty of the Russian Federation extends to its entire territory.”

“SP”: – Is it possible to force business already? Yet there is so much talk about the mobilization economy. How about time…

– And how can you force them, if at the federal level they cannot even nationalize the property of Ukrainian oligarchs, referring to the inviolability of private property, declared in the same Constitution? Any such bill will immediately receive negative feedback from the Constitutional Court. Therefore, by the way, the day before the solemn ceremony of signing documents on joining Russia, for example, the DPR State Defense Committee issued a decree on the nationalization (turning into the property of the Republic) of the property of Ukrainian moneybags.

SP: Is it necessary? Manturov says local chains are doing quite well. Maybe, on the contrary, it is worth supporting them?

“Nature does not tolerate emptiness. If metropolitan retailers do not want to enter new territories, local businessmen will work there, and in the future, Crimean retail chains. They have nothing to lose – they have long been under sanctions.

“It seems to me that it’s really too early for retailers to go to Kherson and Energodar,” says Editor-in-Chief Forum. Moscow time Anatoly Baranov.

“It’s a pity that the Voentorg was liquidated at one time, it would be just right now … Well, in principle, against the backdrop of growing Ukrainian terrorism, the risk is really great.

“SP”: – Manturov claims that local networks are coping. Is it so?

“I don’t think there are crowds going to the sales there now. And people don’t have much money. Work needs to be adjusted, and only then Auchan, fitness, coffee shops.

However, what does Manturov have to do with it? Is he supposed to drive trade networks there for mobilization? If there is a request from retailers for front-line trade, then it must provide. If not, what are we talking about?

“SP”: – What about local trade? Are Ukrainian networks leaving even faster?

– Ukrainian networks are closed automatically so as not to fall under sanctions. Local trade continues, where to go, they will trade even under fire. Some of the local franchises will change their brand, but, I think, supplies have not yet been established for them – this is where the Ministry of Industry and Trade is obliged to help those who want to work under Russian rule.

“SP”: – According to Manturov, his department oriented colleagues to a draft strategy for the development of trade, which sets out a vision for the development of the industry, as well as a concept for the development of wholesale food markets, guidelines for organizing fairs and street trade. To what extent, in your opinion, is this a panacea in the same Donbass?

I don’t think there is a panacea at all. But there is no hunger. If local trade copes, then fine. If not, additional resources need to be sought. I’m talking about Voentorg for a reason …

“SP”: – And what about the receipt of Donbass products on federal markets? Is there anything to do or is it already happening?

— I won’t say anything about Donbass products, something is coming, but it’s hard to identify. There are definitely Crimean products! Wines, fruits, fish and fish products. Rapana and Crimean red mullet cannot be confused with anything. I think there are no artificial obstacles for products from Donbass.

“SP”: – When do you think it will be possible to talk about 100% integration? When will federal retailers, banks, cellular companies come, will they launch transport? In the Crimea, this is still not the case. How many years will the Donbass need?

– It is very difficult to talk about full integration, when even the Crimea is not yet completely in our country … You are right. Well, military action does not contribute. Nobody wants to take risks. And for the state to somehow be active here, there is no such thing either. It goes as it goes, in places …

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